This gluten free lemon drizzle cake is moist, tender and complete with a simple lemon glaze. It’s so easy to make (just one bowl!) and dairy free optional. This tastes like a copycat Starbucks lemon loaf, but better!
My classic gluten free lemon cake is one of my most popular recipes on the blog, and I love creating fresh lemon recipes.
This gluten free lemon drizzle cake is more like a lemon loaf, kind of like a Starbucks copycat! This is a gluten free take on the popular Mary Berry lemon drizzle cake. Any Great British Baking Show fans?!
All you need is a few simple pantry staple ingredients, one bowl and ten minutes of prep time. You’ll wind up with a texture that is more dense than a traditional cake while still having a fluffy and tender crumb.
We have an intense lemon flavor from lemon juice, lemon zest and lemon extract. Plus, it’s topped off with a simple lemon glaze (hence the name drizzle cake) to add a touch more sweetness.
It’s nut free, can easily be made dairy free and I promise you cannot tell it’s gluten free. Try my lemon raspberry cookies next!
How to make lemon drizzle cake
Grease and line a loaf pan and set aside. Mine was 8 1/2 x 4 1/2 but 9×5 works too.
Add the softened butter to a bowl or bowl of a stand mixer with the sugar and cream together for 1 minute.
Add in the eggs and mix until combined. Beat in all wet ingredients until well incorporated.
Add in the dry ingredients and beat until combined. Taste and add more lemon zest or extract if desired. Transfer to the prepared loaf pan and smooth out the top.
Bake for 55-65 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean. Let cool in the pan for 15 minutes, then lift out from the parchment paper and let cool on a wire rack.
Let cool completely (at least 1 hour), then whisk together the ingredients for the glaze. Add more milk if needed to thin.
Pour on top of the loaf and spread on top. Slice and enjoy!
How to prevent a soggy middle
Lemon drizzle cakes and lemon loaves in general can have a bad reputation of being soggy in the middle. This can be due to a few things.
The main reason is that your cake is simple underbaked. The top of the loaf will brown before the center is cooked. Because of this, be sure to test the center with a toothpick, rather than test the doneness by simply looking at the top.
Another popular reason for a soggy or sunken middle is too much rising agent. This gluten free recipe uses just baking powder, no baking soda.
You need just the right amount to allow it to rise, but not so much that too much air is forced into the batter which leads to a sunken middle as it cools.
How to store and freeze
Once prepared, this gluten free lemon drizzle cake will keep at room temperature for up to 4 days. I suggest letting it cool completely, then slicing and storing in a container.
There is no need to chill it in the fridge, but you are welcome to! It will slightly firm up the texture a bit, but the delicious flavor will still be there.
If you are wondering if you can freeze this lemon loaf, you can! I suggest slicing it up before freezing, then wrapping each piece tightly in plastic wrap and placing in a ziplock bag to ensure it does not get freezer burn.
Let thaw fully and it will be good as new!
Frequently asked questions
Do I need lemon extract?
Yes! I first tested this recipe with just lemon juice and lemon zest, but I found the version with the lemon extract was so much more flavorful.
If you do not have lemon extract, you can simply add more lemon zest to give the extra lemony flavor.
What makes it rise?
A combination of the eggs and baking powder! We will be using four large eggs in this recipe, which will help stabilize the texture and give the loaf/cake a nice rise.
The baking powder will also help the cake rise and give it a really nice and fluffy texture.
What flour is best?
I used the Bob’s Red Mill 1:1 Baking Flour. You are welcome to use another brand or blend, but be sure to use one that has xanthan gum because it is important for binding everything together.
Try these fresh desserts next!
Gluten Free Lemon Drizzle Cake
by: claire cary
- ¾ cup softened/room temperature butter dairy or non-dairy
- 1 cup white sugar
- 4 eggs
- ¼ cup greek yogurt dairy or non-dairy
- ⅓ cup lemon juice
- zest of 2-3 lemons depending on flavor preference
- 1 teaspoon lemon extract
- 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- 2 cups gluten free all purpose flour
- 2 ½ teaspoons baking powder
- ½ teaspoon salt
- 1 ½ cups powdered sugar
- 1 tablespoon lemon juice
- 1 tablespoon melted butter
- 1 tablespoon milk more as needed to thin
- 1 teaspoon vanilla
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.
- Grease and line a loaf pan and set aside. Mine was 8 1/2 x 4 1/2 but 9×5 works too.
- Add the softened butter to a bowl or bowl of a stand mixer with the sugar and cream together for 1 minute.
- Add in the eggs and mix until combined.
- Add in all wet ingredients and beat together until well incorporated.
- Add in the dry ingredients and beat until combined. Taste and add more lemon zest or extract if desired.
- Add to the prepared loaf pan and smooth out the top.
- Bake for 55-65 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean.
- Let cool in the pan for 15 minutes, then lift out from the parchment paper and let cool on a wire rack.
- Let cool completely (at least 1 hour), then whisk together the ingredients for the glaze. Add more milk if needed to thin.
- Pour on top of the loaf and spread on top. Slice and enjoy!